Another Life

Full Time • 1983

Nope, this is not the grime artist and »Top Boy« actor, but the pioneers of Italo disco who built a bridge to electro and hip-hop early on in the 1980s. »Another Life« was released in 1983 as the third (and last) LP of the joint project of guitarist Luciano Ninzatti, keyboardist Stefano Pulga and producer Matteo Bonsanto with singer Glen White, which has recently been reanimated by Pulga for a new album in 2021. Already the opener makes it clear that Kano occupied a special musical position in the Italo disco hit machine that was running at full speed at the time. Warm funk instead of slick futurism, longing vocals instead of thickly accented robotnik stuttering—basically, »I Need Love« is closer to a Hi-NRG song than it is representative of Italo disco. This is also due to the fact that behind this music there was neither an anonymous producer team nor an amateurish urge to somehow get in on the hype: Kano’s sound, also inspired by rhythm’n’blues, soul and disco thanks to White, had real songwriting and musical qualities. The title track is perhaps still the most classic Italo disco number: flashy synths, thundering bassline, lots of pathos and a throbbing machine groove. But there is also the filigree boogie of »Dance School« (»Disco makes you crazy«, indeed!) and with »China Star« a fragile synth-pop number that marks the end of night and which even seems to anticipate Bronski Beat’s »Smalltown Boy«. All this makes »Another Life« after almost four decades a small stylistic treasure chest—a great Italo disco album precisely because it transcended Italo disco.